I’m a big fan of using gram flour in carrot cakes, where its light earthy flavour is an unexpectedly natural partner to the sweetness of carrots, fruit and nuts. Channeling its Indian heritage, I add flavour with marinated mango and florally aromatic cardamom. If you can get hold of a few purple carrots, top the cake with simple crystallised slices for their pansy-like prettiness.
In my search for a lighter alternative to the traditional cream cheese frosting, I thought of yogurt, but then someone must have spiked my mango lassi, because I ended up taking a massive detour to Iceland, culinarily speaking. Skyr, an Icelandic dairy product similar to yogurt, is incredibly creamy but virtually fat-free. After a recent trip to Reykjavik, I’ve been using it a lot for guilt-free salad dressings and it works well here too, sweetened with just a smidge of maple syrup or agave nectar.
On this occasion, I’ve made use of my multi-size cake tin to produce a triple layered rectangular cake but it works in two round tins too.
Whisking the egg whites and folding them in last keeps the mixture light, but if you have a fancy food processor you can get away without separating the eggs – just add the flaked almonds last, so you don’t lose their texture.